So I've decided to jump in and take on the ABC's of the Word hosted by Pam at Grey Like Snuffie. I first started following along with my friend Liz at Liz's letters, and then met Pam through the Yes to God Study. I thought it was a good way to do some deeper soul searching on the verses God puts out, and a fun challenge. Since Pam is starting again with the letter A, I thought I'd join in.
So here is my "A" verse.
Dear friends, I urge you as aliens and strangers in the world to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. 1Peter 2:11-12.
Have you ever felt that you didn't belong, or like you don't fit in? I know I feel that a lot. It's funny God has been showing me all of these different verses about how I don't belong in this world, and to not follow the ways of the world. In fact it's been almost daily for the last couple weeks. Not just through verses, but sermons at church, on the radio, and even through worship songs. I believe God is revealing these things to me, to comfort me, to know I'm not alone, to strengthen me to keep living this way, and yes that I don't belong to this world I belong to Him.
When I first answered God's call to follow Him, I noticed things changing in my world. The things I thought were okay, suddenly made me feel uncomfortable, I was seeing with new eyes. Now almost 10 years later, I really feel like an alien. Now with my husband and his new life in Christ, we both feel that way. We have many people in our lives that are not Christians, who think we are just weird because of the things we abstain from. Even some of our friends who are Christians find it hard to understand why we won't go see certain movies, or why we don't watch certain TV shows. It's something that God has placed heavily on our hearts.
In the American Heritage Dictionary the word Alien is defined as: Belonging to, characteristic of or constituting another and very different place, society, or person: stranger. Okay that makes sense I want to be seen that I live my life differently.
Then I looked up Abstain: To refrain from something by one's own choice. This told me that I have a choice to follow what pleases God or what pleases the world. I choose what pleases God.
It's not always easy, many times in a work situation, my husband and I have to hold our tongues as to things said. We sometimes can't even partake in a regular conversation, because we don't have a clue to what they are talking about, and this can be hard and sometimes tempting to crossover to the worlds ways. Through this last year with the election and the battle of Proposition 8 we heard many views from both non believers and believers. People asked us alot our opinions who and how we were voting and why we were voting that way. We prayed a lot for guidance and sought the scriptures, and cast our ballots. We prayed for guidance on how to share with people in love why we voted the way we did. I think this year especially have I felt what Peter said "Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. And we feel it more and more. That's okay though we look to the Lord for our guidance, we are more concerned about pleasing the Lord than people.
We know that the Holy Spirit has guided us towards the things we need to abstain from and those things that can harm us or make us fall. We support each other in that, we teach our daughter those things. Most importantly we feel at peace with it.
We laugh because we have a really big Not of the World decal on the back window of our car. Some people who have seen it have even asked us well what world are you from, are you aliens. So I guess the correct answer is yes.
My pastor this past Sunday asked what was defining our view of Jesus. Were we looking at Him as a way to get the things we want, have we let the culture we live in define who He is and how we believe. Or are we looking to the scriptures, and what Jesus himself told us who He is. Something I've been pondering over all week.
So while I might not fit in at the company party, or people might think I'm to conservative in my thinking, or intolerant, I hope they also see that I live with Hope, and Joy. I know someday I will fit in, I'll be at home when I'm sitting at my saviors feet.